When Gay Meets Grace: My Redemption Story pt7

NOTICE: This is a multi-part blog post series. It is the testimony of James Jewell, Jr. The entire story needs to be broken apart so give him time.

Immediately I felt like a kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar! Upon coming home after the meeting with the Holy Spirit and my insurance agent, I began destroying every piece of filth I owned. I collected everything evil that was technically mine and put them in a trash bag. The business’ office was in the Tower where I was not only the interior decorator I was also the resident decorator that advised the owners on new offices and staging. I thought about throwing the bags in their trash bins, but instead threw them in multiple bins around town. Throwing away the filth only created animosity with my partner as he wasn’t leaving sin. I had yet to tell him about my come to Jesus meeting. He was also totally unaware of the dreams. My plan was to just pack everything up and leave him. At the beginning of 2008, a Christian friend offered to let me stay in her guest bedroom until I found an apartment. Seemed simple enough yet my boyfriend wasn’t going to let me leave without a fight. I had left him before, but this time there were more “things” involved. Seven years had accumilated “our” stuff. Tensions grew worse at home especially since I started going back to church. My partner was by no means a church goer and couldn’t understand why I chose to based on previous hurt. He even said once that he would go with me if it meant I would stay with him. Of course he wanted us to go to the Universal Unitarian Church where other gay partners we knew attended. He grew more and more harsh, and scared at the same time. My partner was so bewildered yet could see changes in me.

By October I had decided to tell my partner of seven plus years I was leaving him, and our sin, completely. It was my birthday and we had driven to Turkey Run State Park. We enjoyed hiking together and this park was our favorite. At one of the overlook rest stops I told him everything. The dreams, the conviction of sin, and that I was leaving him once I got enough money. He laughed and mocked stating that I would never be able do that. I needed him too much. Besides where would I go? His home was my home that we had made for the past seven years. I didn’t have much of a response except that it was true on me leaving. At the very moment I said those words I noticed in the trees across the way what looked like a cross. It was two branches that had broke off and formed a cross resting in the other trees. I knew I wasn’t alone spilling my fears, emotions, and decision out to him. Again an unexplained calm from the Holy Spirit flooded over me. The drive back home was quiet. Once home I officially moved into the guest bedroom, and started sorting and packing. Since I was still self-employed I would get home before him. I would make dinner and be the resident “homemaker.” Some of this stopped which made him angry. One night before November he came to the end of my bed and stated how he could hurt me so bad that it would border on domestic abuse. He decided he wouldn’t only because he chose not to. Personally I think it was the Lord holding him back.

In order to leave I needed money, and well the business was starting to slow down because of the economic downturn. I had money saved up, but it wouldn’t cover all the costs. While I was praying one day the Holy Spirit reminded me I had antique heirlooms that if sold could provide the funds. Remember the items gained from my mother’s house earlier in the story? Well this is where the Lord said to sell them. At first, I resisted only because these items reminded me of my heritage. Some of the pieces of furniture had been in the family over 100 years. An auctioneer was selected and he came to the house to appraise the lot. He said after fees, I could make between $4,500 to $5,000. I asked God for the larger amount as it would pay off debts and get me out of the house. But do you know God chose to do? He sold everything in the auction for over $7,000! After selling the bulk of my possessions that November I walked away with only enough possessions to fill a 6’x8′ storage unit. Sin had taken it’s toll and had left me almost empty handed. Thanksgiving I spent with my brother and his kids. He was unaware of my decision yet rejoiced when I told him. By December 1st I was apartment hunting. God provided a small, one bedroom apartment seven miles out of town in the opposite direction from the house where we had once lived together. The money from the auction provided the down payment and first month’s rent. Praise God I’ve never returned to my boyfriend and the life of sin!

Grace and peace, James

Image courtesy of: Adobe Stock

Scripture from ESV, Crossway Publishers, 2001

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